Review: Tissot’s PRX Chrono Is a Reimagined Neo-Retro Integrated Bracelet Icon

Play video Tissot PRX Automatic Chronograph Watch 0 Hero

Short for “Precise, Robust, X (with the X being a 10 in Roman numerals — a nod to the watch’s ability to offer 10 atmospheres of water resistance) —  the Tissot PRX was a popular Swiss-made quartz-powered watch that first hit the market in 1978. Capitalizing on the era’s proclivity for integrated bracelet watches, the original PRX was largely defined by its slender tonneau-style case, narrow hour markers, and overall sleek design language. Nearly four and a half decades after the release of its first PRX watch, and the Le Locle label made waves in the horological world once again in 2021 with the unveiling of its updated retro-inspired PRX line. Fast forward to today and the revived PRX’s immense popularity has ultimately driven Tissot to deliver numerous additions to the PRX family, with a myriad of references all ranging in style, movement, and case size, including an automatic chronograph variant in the Spring of 2022 — a sleek ‘70s-inspired timepiece that we’ll be putting to the test in this hands-on review of the Tissot PRX Automatic Chronograph Watch. 

At A Glance

Tissot PRX Automatic Chronograph Specs

Case Size: 42mm
Lug to Lug: 41.5mm
Case Thickness: 14.5mm
Lug Width: 13mm
Case Material: 316L Stainless Steel
Water Resistance: 100m
Movement Type: Automatic
Power Reserve: 60 Hours
Movement: Valjoux A05 H31
Lume: Super-LumiNova
Crystal: Sapphire
Strap: Single-Link Stainless Steel Bracelet

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Getting Acquainted With An Integrated Bracelet Icon

First Impressions Of The Tissot PRX Automatic Chronograph

With its tonneau-shaped case, sharp flat integrated lugs, and stealthy single link bracelet, the Tissot PRX Automatic Chronograph readily announces itself as being part of the larger PRX family. However, with quartz PRX quartz and auto models currently available from $375 and $650 respectively, we really weren’t sure what to expect with this nearly-$2,000 chronograph reference — or if it would afford anywhere near the same level of bang for your buck as its more affordable counterparts. Fortunately, we’re pleased to report that Tissot more than manages to justify this watch’s $1,825 MSRP, as it unequivocally distinguishes itself from the rest of the PRX family with its execution and craftsmanship — as well as via its larger case size, stellar surface finishes, high-end materials, and use of a Swiss-made Valjoux movement. 

While photographs of this PRX model do it justice to some extent, it can still be difficult to fully grasp what a tremendously cohesive design the watch sports. Part of Tissot’s T-Classic Collection, the PRX Auto Chrono features an ultra-sleek case that’s complemented by an attractive dial, equally sleek chrono pushers, and a stunning Y-shaped single-link bracelet — the latter of which wonderfully ties the entire timepiece together (in both figurative and literal senses). The entire design is further complemented via a balanced amalgamation of vertical brushed and mirror polished finishes. 

Tissot PRX Automatic Chronograph Watch 1

Chronofied Tonneau-Cased Classic

The Tissot PRX Automatic Chronograph’s Case

With existing PRX models like the Powermatic 80 being such smashing successes, it’s frankly unsurprisingly that Tissot opted to employ an “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it” attitude when designing the PRX Automatic Chronograph’s case, as the chrono model’s tonneau-shaped housing and single-link bracelet are nearly identical to that of the existing PRX references — save for slightly larger dimensions, a new sub-dial-equipped face, and the addition of chrono pushers above and below the crown. The Auto Chrono version of the PRX also retains its siblings’ fixed bezel and cases’ combination of vertical brushing and mirror polishing.

As touched on above, Tissot’s PRX Automatic Chronograph boasts fairly substantial dimensions, with the case measuring 42mm by 41.5mm, and sporting a 13mm lugs and a thickness of 14.5mm. Interestingly, with the case’s lugs being incredibly stubby, the case manages to deliver an impressively compact lug-to-lug measurement of just 41.5mm. Also wonderfully complemented by its single-link bracelet, the case itself is crafted from premium 316L stainless steel. Water resistant down to 100 meters, the entire watch tips the scales at 185 grams (or 6.49oz), including the steel bracelet. 

A polished knurled T-logoed crown is also present on the largely satin steel case while a fixed mirror-polished bezel encompasses the timepiece’s panda-style dial. Opposite the dial, the case has been bestowed with a transparent case-back that provides a look at the PRX model’s Swiss-made automatic movement and its custom-decorated rotor. As a chronograph, this PRX Auto model also unsurprisingly gains a pair of sleek polished chrono pushers at 2 o’clock and 4 o’clock — the former of which activates and stops the watch’s timing hand while the latter resets the 12 o’clock position as needed. 

Tissot PRX Automatic Chronograph Watch 4

An Elegant Panda

The Tissot PRX Automatic Chronograph’s Dial

Equipped with the original PRX model’s hallmark narrow hour markers, this version of the Tissot PRX Automatic Chronograph jettisons its PRX siblings’ sunburst and waffle-pattern faces in favor of a classic panda-style layout. Sitting under a scratch-resistant AR-coated sapphire crystal, the duotone dial boasts a brushed white base that’s contrasted via a trio of black sub-dials, narrow high-polished rose gold indices, matching rose gold sub-dial hands, and a three-item rose gold baton-style hand-set. 

This elegant-looking dial layout also boasts a small date window between 4 and 5 o’clock. Aside from the date window, the sub-dials feature the dial’s only numerals. The bottom sub-dial also houses a white PRX logo while a classic Tissot logo sits above the company’s founding year just below 12 o’clock. The words “Swiss Made” are also separated by the dial’s 6 o’clock hour marker. What’s more, Super-Luminova adorns the dial’s hand-set and hour markers, albeit in somewhat modest amounts. In addition to a fixed outer bezel, the entire dial is also circled by small railroad track style markers. 

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Y-Shaped Flat Single-Link

The Tissot PRX Automatic Chronograph’s Bracelet

Whether discussing the modern PRX line or its range of predecessor’s from the 1970s, a major part of these watches’ overall design is their iconic single-link stainless steel bracelets. Perfectly matching the visual theme of the case, this integrated bracelet rests on a 13mm lug and, more importantly, plays an enormous role in the watch’s overall charm, character, and appeal. Sitting flush with the case, this integrated bracelet features an ultra-unique design with single-row flat-links that sport a wide Y-shape that extends from the top of the watch — or an upside-down Y-shape from the bottom. 

Decorated with the words “Tissot” and “1853” — blocks of text them come together when the two ends are joined — the bracelet’s clasp consists of a butterfly item that’s unlocked via a set of push-buttons. And, while we’re personally incredibly fond of this Y-shaped design, those interested in swapping out the bracelet can very easily do so via the quick-release mechanism that Tissot integrated into the backside of the case. 

Tissot PRX Automatic Chronograph Watch 3

A Swiss-Made Auto

The Tissot PRX Automatic Chronograph’s Movement

On display through the timepiece’s exhibition case-back, the PRX Automatic Chronograph is kept ticking via a VALJOUX A05.H3 movement. Made in Switzerland, this 27-jewel movement has been decorated via a Geneva waves on its rotor. Protected by a two-year warranty, this automatic watch movement also comes equipped with a generous 60-hour power reserve. While it’s not the fanciest or most innovative watch motor, it’s a solid workhorse of a movement that’s more than capable of delivering competent time-keeping and chronograph duties. 

Tissot PRX Automatic Chronograph Watch 6

Reaching A Verdict

Final Thoughts On The Tissot PRX Automatic Chronograph

Our expectations for a watch’s overall quality and fit and finish often largely stem from the timepiece’s MSRP, though this isn’t the case with the PRX Auto Chrono. Despite a sub-$2,000 price point, this PRX reference manages to punch will above its weight in terms of craftsmanship and attention to detail. In typical luxury Swiss watch fashion, this PRX model is incredibly calculated, with every millimeter of the watch being carefully considered, crafted, and executed. While it may not afford the same level of value as some of the cheaper entry-level PRX models, this automatic chronograph still boasts pretty great bang for your buck. 

And while Tissot’s PRX Automatic Chronograph is a beautifully designed timepiece with an unmistakable retro flair, one thing it isn’t is subtle. Even with its lug-to-lug measurement helping to balance it out, the PRX Auto Chrono is a bold, substantially-sized item, with a 42mm case that readily announces itself and catches the eye — unlike more discreet-looking tool-style timepieces that better blend into their surroundings. As such, this watch probably won’t be an ideal choice for those looking for a versatile, understated, daily-wear reference that flies under the radar, however, if you’re in the market for a more dressed up watch for use in professional or formal settings — or simply to class or spiff-up a casual outfit — the PRX Automatic Chronograph is a stellar choice. 

After spending a few weeks wearing this Swiss-made watch, it ultimately became abundantly clear why the PRX Auto Chrono — and the entire T-Classic Collection for that matter — has/have become so popular amongst casual and avid horological collectors and enthusiasts, alike. And, despite a personal penchant for more casual-looking watches, it’s nonetheless hard not to admire Tissot’s PRX Automatic Chronograph for what it is; a beautiful Swiss-made ‘70s-inspired integrated bracelet timepiece that can go toe-to-toe with references costing several times what it does. 

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